SULLIVAN COUNTY, TN (WJHL)-The Sullivan County Anti-Drug Coalition released an app in hopes of preventing underage smoking and drinking.
Members of the coalition met Thursday to launch what they call a “community surveillance tool.”
The free app is designed to allow users to scan their surroundings for alcohol and tobacco advertising that could be targeted towards kids and teens.
Prevention Coordinator Melony Ison hopes that minors will use the app as well.
“If they come into a retail environment, a convenience store, a restaurant, a tobacco store, any of those places they can scan the environment for advertising that’s geared towards our youth and geared towards younger kids,” Ison said.
Organizers said they hope to take the information gathered by the app to make changes that lead to a healthier and substance free Sullivan County.
“What we want to do is if we can change our environment, if we can reduce the amount of advertising to our youth, then we can reduce the number of children and youth using alcohol and tobacco,” Ison said.
On your iPhone or Android you can search in the app store for Sullivan County Anti-Drug Coalition.
The SCAD Coalition also released data Thursday gathered from Sullivan County schools last fall about alcohol, drug, and tobacco use.
Ison said she is surprised by the results.
The survey shows that a significant number of school aged children have at least tried alcohol of some kind. The data also suggests that while smoking has declined, chewing tobacco and smokeless tobacco use is still high.
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